Top Five Ways to Celebrate National Poetry Month

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1. The Greater Cincinnati Writer’s League
Eighty-four years after the founding members first met to critique each other’s poetry, this league still stands strong. Twenty-five dues-paying members meet at The Regency the second Friday of each month to improve their writing and help others do the same. Don’t want to cough up $35 (or more, for those willing and able) for a year’s membership? Just show up to listen—guests are welcome, though only members can participate. The Regency Heritage Room, 2444 Madison Rd., Hyde Park, cincinnatiwritersleague.org

2. Chase Public’s Poetical Performances
A self-described “collaborative art and assembly space” in Northside, this is a place the pros prefer—like world champion spoken wordist Buddy Wakefield, who will perform April 10. BYOB for the event, but take heed: According to Chase Public’s website, “disrespectful B will be shunned with great contempt.” Chase Public, 1569 Chase Ave., Northside, chasepublic.com

3. The Public Library of Cincinnati
Though its Poetry in the Garden series isn’t actually set in an outdoor oasis (it’s in the main branch’s Popular Library Reading Lounge), it is full of readings by seasoned writers and newbies alike. Winners of the library’s second annual poetry contest kicked off the series with presentations April 2, and published regional poets will read their work each of the next four Tuesday nights. The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County, 800 Vine St., downtown, cincinnatilibrary.org

4. Queen City Poetry Slams
On the second and fourth Thursdays of each month, Rohs Street Café hosts Cincinnati poets brave enough to read (or perform) their work to café-goers. With an open mic and as many lattes as one can handle at that time of night, the slam is a favorite weeknight activity of UC students. $3 cover for the 8 pm shows, Rohs Street Cafe, 245 W. McMillan St., Clifton, rohsstreetcafe.com

5. 91.7 WVXU Cincinnati
Lee Hay’s Around Cincinnati program is going all the way to celebrate this month, with nothing but poetry the whole time. Tune in Sundays at 7 pm to hear Kentucky Poet Laureate Frank X Walker discuss his Affrilachian influences and Xavier University Professor Norman Finkelstein talk up the local Walnut Street Poetry Society. The do-not-miss show for poetry diehards? On April 27, State Senator Eric Kearney will review the bill to create an Ohio Poet Laureate position. WVXU, 91.7 FM, wvxu.org

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